28/03/2009 - First press release
Sand, sun and heat were expected... But instead of, the runners have been welcomed by rain, cold and mud. They arrived in the Morroco's South Sahara wearing a short, they were obliged to wear their parka and wellingtons. After their arrival in Daya, where normally medical and administrative checks were planned, the competitors discovered an inundated bivouac, like a slippery skating rink. In only three hours, the MDS' organisation had to repatriate the 1200 runners and support staff to Erfoud where they staid at the main city hotels. Because of the really bad weather conditions, the race direction has decided to cancel the first stage and alter of one day the departure of the race. « We never live this kind of situation in 24 editions, we have been obliged to modify the race departure in order to respect safety rules. » according to the race director Patrick Bauer. Technical and medical checks will take place tomorrow, allowing the runners to set off on Monday morning. The competitors met a very tough transfer, dealing with surprise, anxiety and disappointment. They all fully appreciated the reactivity of the organisation regarding this unique and complex situation. Some of them enjoyed this free time for shopping, others began their training in this surprising weather conditions. Will they influence the race development? Will they help outsiders to beat Marrocan on their fields?Answer on Monday the 30th, during the first heat, if the weather does not oblige the organisation to cancel the race.
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